"something set aside," especially "commodities, agricultural products, etc., reserved by a government for some special purpose, originally military, 1943, from verbal phrase, probably in the sense of "separate out for a particular purpose" (1720); it originally meant "lay aside temporarily" (late 14c.); see set (v.) + aside (adv.). The verbal phrase also is attested as "dismiss from one's mind, leave out of the question" (c. 1400); "put on one side" (early 15c.); "discard or reject from use or service" (1570s).
updated on June 20, 2022